Winter Roofing Problems: Can you Put on a Roof in the Winter?

Is Your Roof Ready for Winter?

As winter approaches, many people start wondering what they can do to prepare for the cold weather, which brings up the common question “can you put on a roof in the winter?”. If you have a roof on your home, one of the most important things you can do is make sure that it’s properly maintained and in good shape before the first snow starts falling! To answer these winter roofing questions, we need to take a closer look at what cold-weather roofing problems exist and the best way to solve them.

Common Cold Weather Roofing Problems

Roof damage happens throughout the year, but the rough winter seasons in Lynchburg can be especially tough on your roof. The snow, ice, freezing, and thawing can create a lot of issues, whether it is a new roof installation or one that is decades old. If these damages are not addressed, they can result in costly roof repairs.

Here are some universal issues or damages your roof may encounter in the winter season and tips that can help you prepare your roof for the season.

Roof collapse

Wet, heavy snow can be damaging to your roof or the entire home. If the weight of the roof’s snow goes beyond the snow load rating, a portion or the entire structure may collapse. Roof fall can result in an accident taking place, even death. It can also result in expensive property damage. So, it is better to take measures before any mishaps take place.

Ice dams

cold weather roofing problem

As the name implies, ice dams are dams made of ice. Due to internal heat from the house, the snow and ice will melt on the roof but as the heat is not evenly distributed, some of them will get collected in cold areas and freeze into small masses of ice. The ice dams obstruct melted water from running down your roof, resulting in leaks. Though there isn’t a proper way out to eliminate this problem completely, with proper wadding and good attic freshening, you can minimize the effect.


An inappropriately insulated attic is one of the main sources for the formation of condensation. This can result in mold and mildew, damaging the inner structure of the home. Condensation can be prevented if your attic is properly ventilated. Inadequate ventilation can damage your roof and also shorten your roof’s overall life span.

Strong winds

Strong winds can negatively affect your roof in the winter. They can damage the shingles, flashings, and can drive moisture within the vents. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do about the natural forces of mother nature. If the shingles or other pieces have been blown away by high winds, you should immediately think of replacing them to protect your roof.

Tree limbs

No doubt, long trees in your yard will give a great look to your home, but it also means you are exposed to some of the dangers these trees can impose. Sometimes, suspended tree limbs can scratch the surface of the roof and damage its upper protective part. Also, strong limbs falling on your roof can damage it. So, to protect your family and your home, you should trim the long tree branches. This will prevent the branches from crashing against the roof.

Can you Install a New Roof in the Winter?

The best time to install a new roof is when the weather is warm enough that you don’t need to worry about the cold and possibly slippery winter conditions. However, you can still try installing a new roof in the winter, but make sure to follow all safety precautions. Cold temperatures might not be ideal for roof installation, but sometimes it is necessary to get done.

Can you Replace Shingles in the Winter?

Cold temperatures don’t necessarily mean shingles cannot be installed; however, if certain precautions aren’t taken, they may not last long and working conditions could be dangerous. If the temperature dips near or below freezing, frost and ice become a serious safety factor while working on your roof. This makes safe footwear an even more critical requirement to prevent injury from falls. That being said, putting down roof shingles in cold weather is a possibility.

How to Fix a Flat Roof in the Winter

Cold weather leading to ice or snow on a flat roof can make finding and even fixing (change to finding and fixing don’t need even) a roof leak a tough job. To fix a flat roof in the winter, all snow needs to be shoveled off from it, and the roof needs to be dry to put down new roof repair materials. Experts such as All Phase Roofing are the best roofers in Virginia to fix all commercial flat roofing issues, even in the winter months.

Can you Put a Metal Roof on in the Winter?

Different from other roofing options, yes, you can put a metal roof on in the colder, winter months without risking the quality. Although many assume metal roofs affect wifi signals, metal roofs are designed to withstand harsh conditions and they’re not phased by snow or ice. They are actually designed to shed snow and ice right off!

You should contact a professional roofing expert to help you fix the issues mentioned above. Although roofing is dangerous throughout the year, winter can be even more difficult and can take a longer period of time to complete. A roof inspection is a good idea to have done before the harsh winter weather arrives.

A professional roofer has the understanding and experience to carefully tackle the winter issues with minimal risk. If you need help, being a winter roof replacement or an inspection, the team at All Phase Roofing can give you a free quote on your roof to help take care of these issues and get your roof looking new again for spring!


When is it too cold to install a roof?

Typically, when the temperature drops below 40° F it becomes too cold for ideal roofing conditions. In order to ensure that roof installation and replacement work properly, adhesive products need the heat from a strong sunny day.

Can roofers work in snow?

Working on roofs is not off limits when it snows. Roofers actually do some work in the snow, so long as their ideal temperature matches up with day’s current conditions. In fact, there are also a few benefits to roofing in these conditions.

Can you tar a roof in cold weather?

Yes, you can tar a roof in cold temperatures, as low as 40° F. Though, the materials will not properly dry and seal until the temperature reaches at least 70 degrees.

Do green roofs work in the winter?

Green roofs have received recent attention for adding to the insulation properties of a roof and their ability to reduce heat loss and consumption rates in winter months.

Should you cover turbine roof vents in winter?

You should not cover turbine roof vents in the winter! Leave them open, as they work to keep temperatures even in your home.


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